Edo election: ADC raises alarm over deployment of 31,000 security operatives
African Democratic Congress, ADC, has raised the alarm over the deployment of over 31,000 policemen in Edo State ahead of the governorship elections holding on Saturday, September 19.
Speaking, the party’s gubernatorial candidate, Mabel Oboh, said it was wrong, unconstitutional and alarming for the state to be laid under siege under a democratic dispensation.
Oboh lamented: “As at last count, it was reported that over 31,000 policemen and security operatives have been deployed in Edo State, including 1,000 policemen from Lagos.
“What is going on? Is Edo in a state of emergency? Is this a ploy to rig the elections and disenfranchise the Edo people? Is the incumbent governor, being the chief security officer of the state, not able to handle security in the state? Edo people need answers.
“The presence is intimidating and is giving the impression that a state of emergency has been declared in Edo State and this is extremely disturbing.
“Rather than place Edo State under siege, the security agencies should fish out those planning to unleash mayhem and anarchy in order to hijack the elections, so that people can exercise their right to vote in peace and harmony.
“The Edo people deserve that much. Democracy must be allowed to flourish if Edo State is to ever know peace. I will continue to speak out until we get it right in Edo State.
“I deeply cry for my people. Edo people should be allowed to vote for their choice on Saturday and any form of intimidation through the deployment of security operatives must be rejected.”
On speculations that people are moving out of Edo State because of fear of violence during the elections, she said: “The people in the know should tell us what is really going on.
“The speculation that people are leaving Edo State for fear of violence is very true. During our campaign, I met people who said that they would leave the state with their families before election day for fear of violence.
“This just goes to show that people will not come out to vote if they feel insecure and this will give room for election malpractices.
“For the election to be considered free and fair, people should be able to go out to vote and it should not be with fear of their lives. My party is watching very closely.”
Speaking on the preparedness of ADC for the elections, Oboh continued: “ADC is very prepared for the election. My party has campaigned well with all protocols observed.
“I am very proud of the DG of my campaign council, Jessica Inneh, and ADC party members that have worked tirelessly to educate the Edo people of what we have on the table.
“Edo people are more than happy to vote for ADC.”
Written by Kartia Velino